Cinema & Gifs
Way to Erta Ale via Awash National Park
The Ethiopian adventure begins straight after leaving the capital Addis Ababa, whereby
you'll get the impression that the half national happening
the main highways. Small truck stations developed itself to larger settlements, which
attract now the far remote
desert inhabitants for trading.
Here these supplying ways are the navel of the world, since
the important imports can be in-supplied over
the sea way only over Somalia and/or Djibouti.
Ethiopia, which completed in former times the largest part of
its imports and exports over the Eritrean port Assab,
evaded in the last years increasingly to the port in Djibouti.
Due to the continuous
border conflict with Eritrea,
the northeast of Ethiopia still does not permit any access to the Red
The first impressions
The first overnight place was the Awash
national park about 100 km west of the capital.
Here, the sumptuous nature at the river banks of the Awash
Wenz convinced with a rich fauna, whereas crocodiles and cheeky
at the campground.
It was not possible to disturb even the shy crocodiles.
They didn't noticed anything and anyone, and so we put up our
tents five meters away from them. At the end they became the photo stars of
Near the Awash falls a big baboon gang with maybe 50
really curious in every move we made.
The possibility of making close-ups on the eye level turned out as very
The dusty travel continued passing the Afrera salt lake, which
is situated in the catchments area of the Danakil depression
wich reaches the deep level of -120 meters. We rested for one
night at a
thermal source, which was the only place where the Afar- people
tourists. By the way, during our stay time we could engaged ourselves
with a mass of mineral salt foam which drifted over the salt lake, and everyone had
a true joy if
this sticky foam around the ears.
the cheerfulness and positive mind again and
again. Ethiopia and its people.
Erta Ale, the dessert volcano
directly to the Erta Ale whereby Henok our guide had to archive still
a few bureaucratic as well as
organizational feats, what means, who has whom with which price to pay. As well known, the passage of tourists does not
reach a real
among the Afar people, and some autocades had to turn back, if
they handled themselves too awkwardly with the military posts in
Urucur. Really high experienced route supervisors who
are versed with the
handling of armed police or the military should be
advisable. Due to
the continuous border
conflict with the Eritrean country,
prescribed for the possibility of robbery or kidnapping
in the Afar-region.
Thus we hunted through the dusty plain and admired the scattered Afar
settlements. The question arose: How do these people create its
in this unreal area? Beside the enormous heat still sand, dust and stones
were existing, but absolutely
nothing for your survival-promoting at all. We ourselves were constantly
sucking at our water bottles. The dryness was so enormous that
it was not possible for me to breath a precipitation at
the photo lenses.
intensive sandstorm was the first special of the next day. One day
before I joked to Patrick, that it would be a great sight, if such a
sandstorm would strike us. But it didn't looked great
and you are brooding when slowly the sun
disappears, and the light
like during a sun eclipse, and it is not possible to have a
sight more then ten meters. Disorientated we stood now at
end of this world, however only for one hour, then the whole
trip could be continued.
Already during the ascent we couldn't await, whether the volcano was active
or not. On
the heat satellite camera (Internet?) Marc could observe
also a general decrease of the crater temperatur
the past weeks. Thus, a free hand
60 second exposure was necessary, whereby a clearly red shine behind the
mighty ridge could be recognized.
Arriving at the edge of the old caldera at approx. 630m the bundled
light from the bowl could be seen.
closer. The 20 meters descent through the old caldera wall was problem-free. Wow,- arrived
at the only desert volcano of the world. Did the entire strains
had been worthwhile ? The first view into
the crater was overwhelming.
performance in all variations
After the volcano presented itself in a real grumpy behavior on the next days
morning, (a compact black plate without any
activity) the first details could be already caught photographically during the whole day. The about 40 meters wide active crater offered
its impressive repertoire of volcanic details to us.
It could be
observed, that 15 meter sized lava clods were sucked almost vertically
like a over dimensional vacuum
cleaner, easily. The gases inside the clods expanded in the hot
lava pool which seethed
immediately and very intensive. This procedure
tored further parts from the cover plate which submerged into the
red depth, and the whole procedure tooks
its run under a wild bubbling. In the second
days afternoon the lake "cooked
to the half, whereby
up to 15 meter.
Overflow of the inner crater. Right up, Henok Tekle
the three days of our stay the sudden changing level of the
lava lake could be observed several times. As to be seen in
the upper pictures, the entire plate was lifted up by the
underground lava stream. On the second day the lift up was so
strong that a violent overflow into the outer part of the
active craters took place. When the surrounding crater ran full,
the inside crater disappeared in its outlines completely, but
suddenly and without a large announcement the entire mirror
lowered itself nearly three meters.
Sudden increasing of the lava niveau. Right: Marc Szeglat
full armed with film- und photo camera.
Then the internal crater
boiled up combined with a remarkable din, and magic, the old
condition was presented again. Now a thin skin was regenerated
again and increased rapidly in its thickness.At this place you are sure, standing at the
volcano with the hottest lava of the world, and it was not possible at least
any longer directly at the 80 meter exposed crater rim. For a short time we had even
lava plate broke again, the game replays. In any case, you'll
get the impression of the global tectonic movement in
comparison during this miniature presentation. This drift is
constantly caused by the mighty moving sub terrain lava stream,
which appears to the earth
surface here at the Erta Ale only in a trickle.